Sunday, 22nd January 2023 - Opening Mass of the MSC Provincial Chapter at St Peter Chanel's Chapel, PRS, Suva, Fiji.

Today's second reading is inviting us to build communion among ourselves and doing it together as part of our discernment during the chapter.  It prevents us from all sorts of divisions, poles, regionalisms, tribalism, nationalisms, etc. That destroys our MSC FAMILY AND BROTHERHOOD. Today's Gospel is encouraging us to strengthen the missionary spirit and the attitude of a Church on the move. The Provincial Chapter is important and unique event in a Province especially in times of difficulties to get everyone together.  It is difficult, it is very expensive, and the pandemic made it even more challenging. It is up to you to make it worthwhile and to make it bear fruit.  The whole congregation is in a time of transformation. A paradigm shifts. The changing patterns of the way of thinking. We are invited to make our Chapter and assembly based on processes of appreciative inquiry with a strong spirit of listening and discernment. It is a time to strengthen the MSC identity.  It is a great crisis of religious identity and lack of missionary spirit that we have all over the world.

We are moving away from the pyramid model of just problems solving or attending the Chapter and trying to win my proposal or trying to manipulate and destroy each other or as long as I'm doing well, I don't care about the others, it is just about electing a boss who is in charge.

We are called to move to a model where authority and leadership is SERVICE. Not privilege. Where pastors or formators are not bosses but servants who accompany processes.

To move to a process of deep and generative listening. Where we all co-construct the Chapter from an Ecosystem(tic) mentality.   As a body where each part is the whole and the whole is in each part. An ecosystem where when one part suffers or dies it affects the whole ecosystem.   The whole is more than the sum of its parts.

So., I invite you not to miss this great opportunity and to let yourself be helped by the facilitators and the process itself.  It is up to you to lay the foundations of this MSC province for the good of the mission.

Meeting with the Pope.

We work for peace, or we are not Christians. One year without weapons would be enough to end world hunger.  Called to be witnesses. Coherence and courage. This is the contribution of Religious Life to the Church today and to the synodal journey. 

"Listening" - The ability to listen. If I don't listen, it's like a car that stays in the garage and goes nowhere.

"Hypocrisy destroys brotherhood" - Resolving tensions is the pope's favourite subject.   Without tensions there is no life.

"Tensions make us grow" - Do not treat tensions as a conflict.  Tensions in themselves are not conflict. It is the human way of proceeding. The resolution of tensions has to be creative. Without cancelling out the poles in tension. The clerical solution is to transform tensions into conflict.   Distinguish when I have to resolve tension and it is not conflict.